Sega Ringwide(ring-wide) and Sega Ringedge (Ring Edge), IS SEGA returning to the hardware market?
It looks like there's some exciting news for old Sega fans and gamers alike.
Kotaku.com has reported that SEGA corporation of Japan has filed a patent for NEW next-gen hardware going by the names of "RingWide" and "RingEdge".
According to the article: "Three trademarks popped up for use with video game software, arcade game boards, stand alone game machines and arcade game machines with built-in screens. The trademarks appear to be linked and are for "RINGWIDE," "RINGEDGE" and a logo with rings."
"Stand alone game machines(home consoles)!"
The trademark was filed on Friday January 30,2009 [url]http://www.siliconera.com/2009/02/04/sega-building-new-arcade-hardware/[/url]
It appears that the logos have rings in them and in addition to designing a new arcade boards SEGA has stated plans on the patent to use the hardware for "stand alone video game machines" which bears a strong possiblity that this next gen board may be patented into a future home console which means that Sega now is considering making another console run.
Unlike the Lindbergh, which had a Japanese only release in 2006 and was patented only for use in asia on September 3,2005. The Ringwide and Ringedge has be trademarked for use in both the U.S., Japan and Europe.
Since the U.S. arcade market is basically dead, it wouldn't be very wise for Sega to release the hardware as arcade only. Also, SEGA has always based thier home consoles off of arcade boards. The Genesis/MD is based off of System 16, The SEGA CD/MEGA CD is based off of System 24, Saturn off of System 32 M3 and Dreamcast off of Naomi. So this new technology stands a chance a becoming a home game console.
The idea of Sega returning to the console market is exciting. Most of it dates back to late 2007 when the Dreamcast 2 speculation firs begin after Sega filed a patent to protect the name, many gamers tried to blow it off. And Nintendo fanboys foolishly tried to decieve themselves into thinking that it meant that DC games would be availible for the Wii VC(which DID not happen at all.)
For each fan or fanboy, it's a mixed bag. SEGA
's return would unite the Sega fan revolution back to support them for another hardware run. Sony fans hate the idea, and many are now worried of it as a possiblity that PS3 may be phased out by another Sega console, due to dismal sales of PS3 so they try to convice themselves that this is a hoax or that Sega has no plans to built a new console. Xbox fans are probably alot more optimistic about a DC 2, hopefull that it can get the PS3 out of the way and get some or it's own ports on the 360.
Once this news hits, it's going to spread like wildfire and the NEW SEGA console rumors are going to grow. There will be many who will try to dismiss it, believe it to be a strong likelyhood. There's reason for thier to be doubt. Sega hasn't launched a console in ten years, they left the hardware market in 2001, and since then have spent the pass decade trying to milk the Sonic franchise,picking up dozens of developers, and releasing mostly average software.
But in Japan the Lindbergh has gained a strong following and is I heard very successful. During the Dreamcast's day, Sega was going bankrupt and was forced to launch the DC in order to stay in the hardware market. And although the DC was a flop in Japan due to it being rushed out in time for Thanksgiving 1998, it did very well in the U.S. Even though Sony did thier best to phase out DC with PS2, Sega made the decision to quit once they heard about Xbox and Gamecube.
It's interesting to note that Sega remains THE only former hardware game maker left. Atari went out of business in 2003(it's name was sold off to Infrogrames) both Mattel Electronics and Coleco shut down after the crash of 1984. SNK went into hibernation after closing thier U.S. division in 2000. And NEC left the video game business for good in 1994, never to return.
Here's some other articles on the subject: